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WARD V. TEXAS, 316 U. S. 547 (1942)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Ward v. Texas, 316 U.S. 547 (1942)

Ward v. Texas

No. 974

Argued May 6, 1942

Decided June 1, 1942

316 U.S. 547


1. The use in a prosecution for murder of a confession obtained by officers of the law by coercing the accused is forbidden by the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. P. 316 U. S. 555.

2. The evidence shows that law enforcement officer, acting beyond their authority and in violation of state law, arrested without a warrant an ignorant Negro, accused of murder, and took him by night and day to strange towns in several counties, incarcerated him in several jails, and by these means and by persistent questioning, coerced him to confess. The use of the confession at the trial voids the conviction. Pp. 316 U. S. 550, 316 U. S. 555.

158 S.W.2d 516 reversed.

Certiorari, post, p. 653, to review a judgment affirming a sentence. The conviction was of murder without malice, and the punishment assessed was confinement for three years in the state penitentiary.

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